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Kenyan runner Mary Keitany meets Pope Francis



The women only world record holder Mary Keitany and her family had a rare opportunity of receiving blessings from Pope Francis in Vatican in Italy on Tuesday.

This happened Sunday’s London Marathon race, where Keitany emerged fifth in a race won by her compatriot Brigid Kosgei.

Together with her husband Charles Koech, who is also coach and their two children, Assumpta Samantha Cherop and Jared Kipchumba, they headed to Italy where they attended a mass presided over by the Pope.

Keitany is a four-time New York Marathon champion and has several titles under her name.

Pope Francis was in Kenya in 2015 where he held a mass at the University of Nairobi grounds which was attended by thousands of Catholic faithful.

How did you feel meeting the Pope for the first time?

It was a surprise being in Vatican, something interesting I can’t even explain. I thought I would just see him from a distance, but being able to meet him in person and shake his hand was something interesting and I would never forget in my lifetime.

Coming to Rome to meet him was huge and I would not take it for granted as it was special thing for me and my family.

Last time Pope Francis came to Kenya, people travelled from all over the country to Nairobi to attend his mass and you could see him at a distance, but it was great honour to exchange greetings with him.

Any memorable message from Pope Francis to you and your family or interactions?

When we met Pope Francis, an interesting thing took place because my daughter, Assumpta Samantha Cherop had with her a photo which she brought from home, Kenya. We took it when we had visited a school and it happened on the backdrop of it there was a picture of Pope Francis on the wall.

My daughter wanted to take a picture with him on the wall and it was about three years ago. So, when I was going to London, my manager Gianni Demadonna informed me of the possibility of going to Rome to meet the Pope but we knew how difficult it would be.

When my daughter heard this, she reminded me of the picture she has taken and told me she would like to gift it to Pope Francis. I packed it for her and when the two met, she asked her name and she responded Assumpta, given to her by Late Bishop Cornelius Korir.

Korir who met us when I was expectant had said if we give birth to a boy, we should call him Francis and if it was a girl we should call her Assumpta. We got a girl and that’s how she ended up with that name.

The Pope was excited to receive the present when she mentioned that was the two of them together on the picture.

He also asked my son what was his name and what we do, we told him and also explained I am an active athlete. He told us to work hard and use the talent given by God well.

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Why you can’t have consensual gay sex in Kenya – High Court



The High Court on Friday declined to decriminalise sections of the Penal Code that make it illegal to have consensual same sex in Kenya.

Judges Roselyn Aburili, Chacha Mwita and John Mativo noted that phrases used in the law are clear and disclose offences known in law.

They further said a statute is not rendered vague for lack of a definition and that the petitioners failed to prove discrimination and violation of rights.


Petitioners wanted the court to quash sections 162 and 165 of the Penal Code.

The law states that a person contravening the sections, whether in public or private, is guilty of a felony and is liable to imprisonment for five years.


Section 162 reads: “Any person who – (a) has carnal knowledge of any person against the order of nature; or (b) has carnal knowledge of an animal; or (c) permits a male person to have carnal knowledge of him or her against the order of nature, is guilty of a felony and is liable to imprisonment for fourteen years.

Section 165 reads that any male person who, whether in public or private, commits any act of gross indecency with another male person, or procures another male person to commit any act of gross indecency with him, or attempts to procure the commission of any such act by any male person with himself or with another male person, whether in public or private, is guilty of a felony and is liable to imprisonment for five years.


The petitioners argue that the State has no business regulating matters of intimacy; they told the judges that gay feelings are natural and that the State should not interfere with the private matters of two consenting adults.

It is their argument that the two sections are discriminatory and contravene various provisions of the Constitution such as the right to equality, freedom from discrimination, human dignity, freedom, security and privacy.

However, religious groups say such matters should be guided by the country’s values.

President Uhuru Kenyatta has said in the past that gay rights are a “non-issue” in Kenya, as same-sex relations are not an issue of human rights, but of “our own base as a culture”.

During a visit to Kenya in 2015, Barack Obama, the then US president, directly challenged Mr Kenyatta, on the need for equality for the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) community, suggesting that “bad things happen” when countries do not accept their citizens’ right to be homosexual.

Mr Kenyatta bluntly shut down Mr Obama’s discussion on gay rights terming it “a non-issue” and that Kenya is not keen on embracing homosexuality.


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Waititu mum on alleged family’s hand in Kiambu graft probe



Besieged Kiambu Governor Ferdinand Waititu has left the public guessing on the alleged involvement of his family members in theft of millions of shillings from the county coffers.

The governor, who is accused of presiding over the alleged loss of close to Sh600 million, has neither denied nor admitted claims that his daughters did business with the county.

The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) has accused him of conflict of interest after it emerged that some of his relatives got tenders.

“Preliminary investigations show that contractors paid monies to senior county officials, their companies or relatives through proxies,” the statement reads in part.

But in an interview with the Nation on Thursday evening after his release from police custody, Mr Waititu said “anybody is free do business with the county government of Kiambu”.

“I want to state clearly that any Kenyan has a right to do business with the county government of Kiambu so long as he or she is qualified,” he said without elaborating further.

Unconfirmed reports had said that one of Mr Waititu’s daughters was among the 15 people being targeted in the ongoing investigations by the EACC detectives.

The outspoken governor, popularly known as Baba Yao, is also being investigated over alleged corruption in a number of his county programmes, including ‘Kaa Sober’, which was aimed at rehabilitating alcoholics.

The initiative was said to have gobbled close to Sh700 million before it was terminated.

His arrest on Thursday came hours after the Kiambu County Assembly rushed and passed a supplementary budget in which it approved an expenditure of Sh722 million under the controversial programme.

The approval of the budget was widely seen as a scheme to regularise the controversial expenditure in which millions of shillings are suspected to have been stolen.

Mr Waititu was released after being granted Sh500,000 anticipatory bail.

Kiambu Principal Magistrate Brian Khaemba ordered the governor to present himself alongside his lawyers to a police station.

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VIDEO: Machakos First Lady ‘Tetema’ dance moves leave Kenyans asking for more



Machakos County First Lady Lilian Ng’ang’a has excited the online community after showing off her dancing skills during a meeting with students.

Lilian, dressed in a flowered green dress, put her best foot forward as she jammed to Tanzanian bongo star Rayvanny’s hit song ‘Tetema’.

In her speech, she urged the students to embrace their talents in addition to fulfilling their academic dreams.

The online community had a lot to say about her dancing skills, with a section expressing their disappointment for her underwhelming dance moves.

“NTV do you even know what dancing is, this is like a pliers fitted in a trouser, very rigid and dry,” said Killy Emmanuel.

“Leave alone mutua thing. The mama in black skirt is doing the real tetema,” wrote Innocent Favoured Nzola.

“The only thing ina tetema hapo ni salary Na allowances,” commented Abdul Aziz Mohammed.

“Sijaona mtu anadance hapo labda anafanya mashoweshi,” stated patience Ashley.

“Am not a good dancer but I can do better than this,” added Ann Karanu.

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